Griswold v. Connecticut
381 U.S. 479, 85 S.Ct. 1678, 14 L.Ed.2d 510 (1965)

  • Griswold and Buxton worked for Planned Parenthood, and gave out information on contraception. They were arrested for violating a Connecticut law that made contraception illegal, and made assisting someone to get contraception illegal.
    • Btw, they only provided information to legally married couples.
  • The Trial Court found Griswold and Buxton guilty and fined them $100. They appealed.
  • The Connecticut Supreme Court upheld the convictions.
  • The US Supreme Court reversed.
    • The US Supreme Court found that the Connecticut law was a violation of the 1st Amendment guarantee of right to free speech and right to free assembly.
    • The Court used this occasion to combine aspects of the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 9th Amendments to create a right to privacy.
    • The Court found that marital relations are within in the zone of privacy created by several fundamental constitutional guarantees. The Court found that laws should not intrude on this zone.
      • The Court suggested that the public would be repulsed by the idea of police searching a married couple’s bedroom for signs of contraceptive use.
      • The Court limited this decision to married couples. Eisenstadt v. Baird (405 U.S. 438 (1972)) later extended the right to unmarried couples on the basis of due process.
  • In a concurrence, it was suggested that the right to privacy, and the right to be married are guaranteed by the 9th Amendment, which says that the Constitution should not be interpreted to deny or disparage other rights retained by the people.”
  • Current Supreme Court decisions have noted that there is no mention of right to privacy in the Constitution.